New International Version

Luke 18

The Parable of the Persistent Widow

1Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’

“For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”

And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”

The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector

To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’

14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

The Little Children and Jesus

15 People were also bringing babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. 16 But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”

The Rich and the Kingdom of God

18 A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

19 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 20 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’[a]

21 “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said.

22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”

23 When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. 24 Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25 Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.”

26 Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?”

27 Jesus replied, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”

28 Peter said to him, “We have left all we had to follow you!”

29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God 30 will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.”

Jesus Predicts His Death a Third Time

31 Jesus took the Twelve aside and told them, “We are going up to Jerusalem, and everything that is written by the prophets about the Son of Man will be fulfilled. 32 He will be delivered over to the Gentiles. They will mock him, insult him and spit on him; 33 they will flog him and kill him. On the third day he will rise again.”

34 The disciples did not understand any of this. Its meaning was hidden from them, and they did not know what he was talking about.

A Blind Beggar Receives His Sight

35 As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.”

38 He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

39 Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

40 Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, 41 “What do you want me to do for you?”

“Lord, I want to see,” he replied.

42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” 43 Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God.

Footnotes

  1. Luke 18:20 Exodus 20:12-16; Deut. 5:16-20

New International Reader's Version

Luke 18

The Story of the Widow Who Would Not Give Up

1Jesus told his disciples a story. He wanted to show them that they should always pray and not give up. He said, “In a certain town there was a judge. He didn’t have any respect for God or care about what people thought. A widow lived in that town. She came to the judge again and again. She kept begging him, ‘Make things right for me. Someone is treating me badly.’

“For some time the judge refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘I don’t have any respect for God. I don’t care about what people think. But this widow keeps bothering me. So I will see that things are made right for her. If I don’t, she will someday come and attack me!’ ”

The Lord said, “Listen to what the unfair judge says. God’s chosen people cry out to him day and night. Won’t he make things right for them? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, God will see that things are made right for them. He will make sure it happens quickly. But when the Son of Man comes, will he find people on earth who have faith?”

The Story of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector

Jesus told a story to some people who were sure they were right with God. They looked down on everyone else. 10 He said to them, “Two men went up to the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee. The other was a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed. ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people,’ he said. ‘I am not like robbers or those who do other evil things. I am not like those who commit adultery. I am not even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week. And I give a tenth of all I get.’

13 “But the tax collector stood farther away than the Pharisee. He would not even look up to heaven. He brought his hand to his heart and prayed. He said, ‘God, have mercy on me. I am a sinner.’

14 “I tell you, the tax collector went home accepted by God. But not the Pharisee. All those who lift themselves up will be made humble. And those who make themselves humble will be lifted up.”

Little Children Are Brought to Jesus

15 People were also bringing babies to Jesus. They wanted him to place his hands on the babies. When the disciples saw this, they told the people to stop. 16 But Jesus asked the children to come to him. “Let the little children come to me,” he said. “Don’t keep them away. God’s kingdom belongs to people like them. 17 What I’m about to tell you is true. Anyone who will not receive God’s kingdom like a little child will never enter it.”

Rich People and the Kingdom of God

18 A certain ruler asked Jesus a question. “Good teacher,” he said, “what must I do to receive eternal life?”

19 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good except God. 20 You know what the commandments say. ‘Do not commit adultery. Do not commit murder. Do not steal. Do not be a false witness. Honor your father and mother.’ ” (Exodus 20:12–16; Deuteronomy 5:16–20)

21 “I have obeyed all those commandments since I was a boy,” the ruler said.

22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You are still missing one thing. Sell everything you have. Give the money to those who are poor. You will have treasure in heaven. Then come and follow me.”

23 When the ruler heard this, he became very sad. He was very rich. 24 Jesus looked at him. Then he said, “How hard it is for rich people to enter God’s kingdom! 25 Is it hard for a camel to go through the eye of a needle? It is even harder for someone who is rich to enter God’s kingdom!”

26 Those who heard this asked, “Then who can be saved?”

27 Jesus replied, “Things that are impossible with people are possible with God.”

28 Peter said to him, “We have left everything we had in order to follow you!”

29 “What I’m about to tell you is true,” Jesus said to them. “Has anyone left home or wife or husband or brothers or sisters or parents or children for God’s kingdom? 30 They will receive many times as much in this world. In the world to come they will receive eternal life.”

Jesus Speaks a Third Time About His Coming Death

31 Jesus took the 12 disciples to one side. He told them, “We are going up to Jerusalem. Everything that the prophets wrote about the Son of Man will come true. 32 He will be handed over to the Gentiles. They will make fun of him. They will laugh at him and spit on him. 33 They will whip him and kill him. On the third day, he will rise from the dead!”

34 The disciples did not understand any of this. Its meaning was hidden from them. So they didn’t know what Jesus was talking about.

A Blind Beggar Receives His Sight

35 Jesus was approaching Jericho. A blind man was sitting by the side of the road begging. 36 The blind man heard the crowd going by. He asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.”

38 So the blind man called out, “Jesus! Son of David! Have mercy on me!”

39 Those who led the way commanded him to stop. They told him to be quiet. But he shouted even louder, “Son of David! Have mercy on me!”

40 Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When the man came near, Jesus spoke to him. 41 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked.

“Lord, I want to be able to see,” the blind man replied.

42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight. Your faith has healed you.” 43 Right away he could see. He followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God.